(WKBN) – Schools across the Valley will be closed for at least three weeks. One task the districts are trying to figure out is how to make sure students are fed during that time.
After the governor announced schools would shut down because of the coronavirus, school administrators began working on plans to feed students.
“Most school districts are modeling after the summer food program where families can come in. Over 18, they pay $2 for a bagged lunch and under 18, it’s free,” said Liberty Schools Superintendent Joseph Nohra.
He said during this time, schools will do everything they can to help.
“We just want to be able to provide whatever nourishment we can because we feel horrible that the children aren’t here eating on a daily basis.”
For Liberty students, to-go lunches will be available Monday through Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the high school. The student must be there to pick it up.
A food pantry is open from 12 to 2 p.m. at the PreK-6 school.
Natalie Winkle, local food director of Boardman Schools, agreed the main priority is the children.
“We have to make sure the kids are fed. That’s the utmost importance to all of us,” she said. “We want to make sure that no matter during it being really tough for the kids and the parents, that one less thing they have to worry about is food.”
This will be for at least three weeks but could go through the end of the school year.
Nohra and Winkle said they’ll do whatever it takes to help support families and their children.
“Our principals, our administration will do everything we possibly can to come together as a family to support the education and nourishment of children,” Nohra said.
“We don’t — from moment-to-moment, hour-to-hour — know what’s going to happen next but at least for today, we know the kids are fed,” Winkle said.
Other school districts in the area are following suit.
Howland Schools will continue its breakfast and lunch program for students who need it. Breakfast or lunch for students can be picked up between 8 a.m. and 12 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays at the high school by driving into the “U” at the north end of the building between the music wing and main high school complex.
Mathews Schools are working with Mustangs Care on a plan to get food to the 60 students who receive weekly food packages.
Hubbard Schools will be having a drive-thru to distribute nonperishable food items on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 12 to 3 p.m. in the back parking lot of the middle school. This service is for any district family in need of food during the closure.
Warren City Schools will serve lunches from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday. In addition to lunch being provided at each of the five schools, students can also pick up food at the following locations. To benefit from this program, students are asked to go to the location closest to where they live, regardless of where they are enrolled. If you have questions, call 330-841-2321.
– Community Garden (Former Laird School Site), 565 Laird Ave.
– Hampshire House, 244 5th St. SW
– Packard Park, Mahoning Avenue
– Renaissance Place, 1948 Palmyra Rd.
– Warren Family Mission, 155 Tod Ave. NW
– Warren Heights, 504 Douglas St. NW
– YMCA-Trumbull Family Fitness, 210 High St.
– St. Paul Lutheran Church, 2860 E. Market St.
– FOCUS Building (former ACOP Building), 2015 Niles Rd. SE
– Former Emerson School site, 1619 Drexel Ave. NW
– Former Secrest School site, 1001 Bennett Ave. NW
New Springfield Church of God will be putting together grocery boxes for those in need. Pick-up is at the church on Garfield Road from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday through Friday. You can call 330-549-2060 with questions.
East Palestine Schools will be handing out breakfast and lunch, starting Tuesday. The distribution will be from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. at the middle school, Centenary Methodist
Church, Unity Fire Station and Negley Church.
If you don’t see your school listed here and need help, call your local school district.